Russian Modernism: The Transfiguration of the Everyday

Hardcover | January 13, 1998

byStephen C. Hutchings

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This book interprets the baffling complex of meanings attached by Russian culture to the concept of everyday life, or byt, and assesses its impact on Russian modernist narrative. Drawing on modern literary theory and theology, Stephen C. Hutchings argues that byt emerged from a dialogue between two aesthetic systems, one predominant in Western Catholic and Protestant cultures, the other reflected in Orthodox iconic traditions. He offers provocative, yet careful, readings of key narrative texts from the period.

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This book interprets the baffling complex of meanings attached by Russian culture to the concept of everyday life, or byt, and assesses its impact on Russian modernist narrative. Drawing on modern literary theory and theology, Stephen C. Hutchings argues that byt emerged from a dialogue between two aesthetic systems, one predominant in...

Format:HardcoverDimensions:316 pages, 8.5 × 5.43 × 0.87 inPublished:January 13, 1998Publisher:Cambridge University Press

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0521580099

ISBN - 13:9780521580090

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments; Introduction; Part I: 1. Narrative and the everyday: myth, image, sign, icon, life; 2. The development of byt in nineteenth-century Russian literature; Part II: 3. Enacting the present: Chekhov, art and the everyday; 4. Fedor Sologub's aesthetics of narrative excess; Part III: 5. The struggle with byt in Belyi's Kotik Letaev and The Christened Chinaman; 6. Breaking the circle of the self: Vasilii Rozanov's discourse of pure intimacy; 7. At the 'I' of the storm: the iconic self in Remizov's Whirlwind Russia; Conclusion; Notes; Bibliography; Index.

Editorial Reviews

"Stephen Hutching's densely written book rewards the diligent reader with a sophisticated, well-illustrated, and convincing analysis of the function of byt (routine life) in twentieth-century Russian literature. Hutching's work...provides fresh, insightful close readings of salient Silver Age texts...Even more important, however, Hutchings convincingly traces how the struggle in Russian literature between are and "real life" achieves its ultimate transposition through Silver Age literature....it merits careful attention by any serious scholar of twentieth-century Russian literature and cultural studies." The Russian Review, vol.59